President's Message

By Eric Langenbacher,


It was wonderful to see so many neighbors at the BCA’s annual gløgg party on February 3—in fact it was near-record turnout. We were happy to hear from Councilmember Jack Evans and our former ANC Commissioner Ed Solomon, whom we honored for his years of service to ANC 2E and the BCA. Unfortunately, the Mayor could not make it, but I was assured that she will come to our summer picnic, which will be on June 15 this year. I would like to thank everyone who volunteered for this event, but especially Linda Brooks, who once again opened her home so graciously for the event. The gløgg was as delicious as ever and was a great pre-game treat before the Super Bowl.

DC Water’s green alley initiative has been going strong the last few months and has temporarily disrupted life for many neighbors who cannot park behind their houses or have had to move their trash bins. There have also been some weather-related delays. Even though there have been legitimate complaints about sub-par outreach to neighbors and work being done on national holidays, the team and DC Clean Rivers Project project manager Amanda Zander in particular have been quite responsive to neighbor and BCA queries in my opinion. Please have a little more patience because the project is expected to be completed this month. Remember to move your bins back to their normal places in a timely manner once work is completed.

Traffic has been challenging on Reservoir Road due to construction at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, which will last for several more years. The ANC recently endorsed a plan to temporarily eliminate some parking spaces on the south side of Reservoir to expedite turning at a new traffic light at the emergency room entrance. We hope this will improve the situation, but we will continue to monitor impacts.

Since last summer, neighbors have reported an increase in trash in the portions of Burleith adjacent to the hospital and university. MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, working closely with representatives of the Burleith Citizens Association (Nan Bell and Ed Ohl) and colleagues at Georgetown University (Cory Peterson and Chris Murphy), has committed resources to pick up trash at least once weekly. The areas covered are North/South and East/West for the square areas of 37th, 38th, and 39th Streets NW between Reservoir Road and T Streets NW, including R and S Streets within the designated blocks. The trash collection measures began on March 4. The BCA expresses our gratitude to the team at MedStar, and especially Regina Knox Woods, for continuing to be a good neighbor. The hospital will track progress on this matter with the aim of ensuring that the problem is adequately addressed.

It’s finally happening—Burleith children are moving from Stoddert Elementary School to Hyde-Addison. I recently spoke to representatives at Hyde-Addison, and at the February 4 ANC 2E meeting representatives from DCPS and the project team made a presentation about the progress of the renovation. It does seem that they will finish the renovation as planned for an August 2019 opening and that Burleith children will attend Hyde-Addison as their in-boundary school—unless they are already at Stoddert (or have siblings there). (Click for FAQs about the boundary change, the Hyde-Addison modernization web page, and info on registration for new families (which is happening now).

I was a Stoddert parent to two boys (Adam and Max) who attended from 2002–12. My wife, Kay, was the Stoddert PTA co-president for two years (before it became a PTO) back in the day. She also worked in the aftercare program until 2017. We were involved in various ways with Stoddert for 15 years and vividly remember the “old Stoddert”—in fact, I still have several plants in my yard that were once part of the Stoddert garden near the current playground. We lived through the big renovation, and there are several commemorative bricks near the entrance to the school that we had donated in conjunction with that effort.

I bring this up because Burleith families have sent their children to Stoddert since the 1970s—about 45 years. In fact, after the local school here was closed and after an experiment with a six-school complex, Burleith chose to be exclusively in Stoddert’s boundary in the late 1970s or early 1980s.

I'm sure many other families have similar fond memories of this great school that was the first to educate their children. My wife and I met our best friends through our kids who attended the school—and our boys also have life-long friends from the school. I would also add that a large majority of Burleith neighbors wanted to stay in the Stoddert boundary—and we also advocated for this in front of DCPS actors as much as we could.

That said, we are now looking to the future and the state-of-the-art facilities that we will have at Hyde-Addison. I think we in Burleith are really excited about the new Hyde-Addison and forging a community school with our great neighbors in Georgetown.

But, at this moment, many families in Burleith are nostalgic about this rather big change given our neighborhood's long history and investment with Stoddert. Many of us are wistful, perhaps even a bit emotional about all of this. Please feel free to use the comment section of my February president’s message to share your family's memories of Stoddert and what it has meant to you.